Economic and marketing aspects of post-harvest handling of grains
Why is it that engineers have been very successful technically with innovations in drying and storage but that in most countries of the world these innovations remain largely unadapted small and medium farmers? Could it be because farmers see no advantage in using the technology? If the traders who buy grain from small farmers pay the same price for different moisture contents there is no incentive to improve drying. If the farmer needs to sell his grain immediately after harvest to raise money, there is no reason for him to improve his storage. When there appears to be a good reason for the farmer to introduce new methods, the costs may outweigh the benefits. Even if the benefits are greater than the costs the investment required from the farmer may present him with a risk he is not prepared to take. The technologist seeks to reduce losses: the farmer wants to reduce costs. This paper discusses these issues.